Tag Archives: kyle dake

39: Frank “Gorilla Hulk” Molinaro on Mental Toughness, Visualization, and Mastery of a Technique

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Frank Molinaro aka Gorilla Hulk is the 2012 NCAA Wrestling Champion, and a 4-time NCAA Division-I All-American; we talk about World Team Trials, last second victory, his day-to-day routine, diet, Vitamix, rehabbing injuries, sauna, cutting weight, leg killer video, cardio circuits, drilling, play wrestling, mastering a technique, 2011 NCAA finals match against Kyle Dake, wrestling the NCAA tournament through an injury, visualization, confidence, matches that haunt him, mental toughness, married life, coaching, and more.

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Video: What It Takes to Win a National Championship

Full Audio of Interview on YouTube

Quotes

Frank on what it takes to win an NCAA championship:

“You can’t just want to win a national championship. You have to see it every day in your head. You have to expect it to happen. When I made it to my first national finals, I was going in with the attitude that I’m going to wrestle 100% and I was going to make it happen, and that’s not how you win at the highest level. So I changed my approach the year after. I visualized winning probably 100 times a day, wrote it down first thing in the morning, had it on my phone, had it on my walls, had it on my locker. So when it happened it wasn’t a crazy jump up and down reaction, it was something that I expected to happen. My junior year I can honestly say I didn’t expect it to happen. I thought it could happen. But there’s a huge difference between when you want something to happen and you truly 100% believe something is going to happen.”

Frank on what it takes to be a winner:

“What it comes down is how badly do you want to win and what you’re willing to do.”

Frank on losing:

“Losing is something that I’ll never be able to get used to. I take losses very seriously. Losing will put me into depression for two weeks. I question everything in my life. I question what the heck I’m doing. I did this wrong. I did that wrong. So, I know how painful losing is every time I step on the mat and how badly I want to win. The moment you start to tolerate losing, you’re not going to reach your potential.”

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24: Kyle Dake, 4x NCAA Wrestling Champion

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In episode 24, I talk with Kyle Dake, 4x NCAA champion, Dan Hodge trophy winner, and 2013 SI College Athlete of the Year, about a tradition of wrestling in his family, early wrestling days, the influence of his mom and dad, setting goals, overcoming losses early in his career, facing Jordan Burroughs, David Taylor, Andrew Howe, competing with a broken hand against a 2x world champion, Denis Tsargush, training to exhaustion, keeping the training fun, being pushed by training partners like Jordan Leen, Call of Duty, Breaking Bad, and much more.

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Audio Clips on YouTube

Quotes

Kyle on the mental toughness advice his mom gave him:

“Your mind will break before your body will break.”

Kyle on his approach to the intense pace of competition:

“You have to learn how to function when you’re dog-tired… when you don’t think your body is capable of doing anything more, but you have to do more. You can either cower, give up takedowns, give up points, submit to the guy, or you can do everything in your power to make sure that doesn’t happen.”

Kyle on the training to exhaustion:

“Feeling that exhaustive state is very important in the practice room, because once you get on the mat and you’ve felt that pain before, you’ve felt that exhaustion, it’s a lot easier to overcome it in competition.”

Jordan Leen, Kyle’s teammate and NCAA champ out of Cornell, said the following in an ESPN commentary as Kyle was wrestling in his 2010 NCAA finals match:

“Kyle Dake refuses to accept failure at any level. He takes it personally when he gets taken down in the room. It affects his soul almost. He is a well balanced wrestler, but they key is that he has to win. According to him, he has to win. He will do anything that it took to win.”

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22: Olympic and NCAA Wrestling with Charlie Neely and Chris Romanchick

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In episode 22, I talk with Charlie Neely and Chris Romanchick about freestyle, Greco-Roman, folk-style wrestling, Olympics, 2013 World Championships, Dan Gable, John Smith, Cael Sanderson, coaching high school wrestlers, the stacked 165 lbs division with Kyle Dake, David Taylor, Jordan Burroughs, Andrew Howe, “The Losses of Dan Gable” by Wright Thompson, Brent Metcalf, red shirt years, new wrestling rules, women in wrestling, changes to weight classes, cutting weight, rule sets in wrestling and jiu jitsu, and much more.

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Quotes

Charlie on his approach to coaching high school wrestlers:

“There’s no getting around the fact that I’m going to be pushing them, and they’re going to be working hard. I’ve learned over the years that wrestling is fun. I didn’t always know that. I didn’t realize it until later in life. I’m hoping to be able to communicate that to the kids and show them how wrestling can be fun. I think it’s all too easy to get caught up in the weight management part of the sport and the grind nature of the sport and the pressure that comes from competing or from parents.”

Chris on the value of wrestling or jiu jitsu in developing young minds:

“I think some of the best lessons you learn in life are lessons you learn on the mat, be it jiu jitsu or be it wrestling. It’s just honest, it’s real.”

Taking something  Charlie said completely out of context:

“Russia is #1.”

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